[MaFLa] reminder: invitation to a talk on `The Special Significance of Equality of Opportunity`by Martin O`Neill - 22 October, 5.30 PM - plus draft paper

Krisztina Biber Biberk at ceu.hu
Mon Oct 21 09:04:11 CEST 2013

The CEU Department of Philosophy cordially invites you to a talk 
(as part of its Departmental Colloquium series)
Martin O'Neill (York) 
`The Special Significance of Equality of Opportunity`
Tuesday, 22 October, 2013, 5.30 PM, Zrinyi 14, Room 412
My aim in this article is to examine the special significance of
equality of opportunity. I want first to answer the question of whether
equality of opportunity really is special, when compared to any other
kind of distributive equality. My answer will be an affirmative one.
Equality in the distribution of opportunity has an importance that is
not derivative from a broader concern with egalitarian distribution and,
therefore, any plausible view of distributive justice has to give a
special place to a concern with equal opportunity. 
My hope is that, in answering this question of the significance of
equality of opportunity, one can also thereby show some interesting
features, and intriguing shortcomings, of views that do not grant it a
special place. I will then try to defend the “special significance” view
by relating it to broader issues regarding the self-understanding of the
agents who are also the subjects to whom an account of justice is
My account looks to provide a reconstructive justification for a view
that is very close to Rawls’s view of the place of equality of
opportunity, but is revisionary in a number of respects, not least of
which is the rejection of Rawls’s commitment to the lexical priority of
a principle of equality of opportunity over other distributive
For those who are interested to read the draft paper here is the link:
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